Cannabis News The November Coalition
  More People Seek Help for Marijuana Addiction
Posted by CN Staff on May 02, 2006 at 12:56:54 PT
By Kevin Helliker, The Wall Street Journal 
Source: Post-Gazette  

cannabis USA -- People are aware of the addictive potential of alcohol, cocaine, heroin, even gambling. But the perception persists that marijuana isn't addictive.

The doggedness of this myth may be attributable to the campaign to legalize the drug, as well as the comparatively subtle costs of marijuana addiction. But there is virtually no debate among American researchers, who have been documenting and studying marijuana addiction for more than two decades.

Now, Cambridge University Press has combined the results of their federally funded studies -- most already published in peer-reviewed journals -- in a new book called "Cannabis Dependence."

The book offers substantial scientific evidence of what Marijuana Anonymous members know firsthand -- that the euphoria induced by THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, can be addictive. Studies show that between 2 percent and 3 percent of U.S. marijuana users become addicted within two years of first trying the drug, which is scientifically known as cannabis. About 10 percent of those who try it become addicted at some point.

Now, addiction-treatment statistics are showing dramatic growth in marijuana-related problems. A study issued last month by the University of Maryland's Center for Substance Abuse Research examined the drug of choice for Americans seeking treatment for addiction during the decade that ended in 2003. It found that the percentage of addicts who cited marijuana as their primary problem more than doubled to 16 percent from 7 percent, while alcohol fell to 41 percent from 57 percent. Among illegal drugs, only opiates ranked higher than marijuana as a problem for treatment seekers.

Marijuana's rise in the ranks of problem drugs may reflect a big spike in usage. The number of Americans age 12 and older using marijuana at least once a month jumped to 14.6 million in 2004 from 10.1 million in 1996, according to the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, which adds that some of that jump may be attributable to a change in surveying methods.

To study marijuana addiction, the contributors to "Cannabis Dependence" -- a group of researchers at universities across the U.S. -- published newspaper advertisements offering treatment to people unable to quit using the drug. Invariably, hundreds stepped forward. The typical volunteer was a white-collar man in his thirties who smoked marijuana daily and didn't much abuse alcohol or other drugs. "Their substance of choice is marijuana," says Roger A. Roffman, an editor of "Cannabis Dependence" and a University of Washington professor of social work.

The researchers found that the overall rate of addiction among marijuana users is slightly lower than for imbibers of alcohol. But among people who use marijuana daily, the rate of addiction is significantly higher than among daily drinkers. Addiction is diagnosed when a person experiences at least three of seven indicators, such as failure to control usage, preoccupation with the drug and withdrawal symptoms.

The addictiveness of marijuana is underappreciated in part because legalization advocates tend to play down the problem. But a bigger factor may be that marijuana addiction typically doesn't kill, wreck careers, ruin health or otherwise wreak the sort of tragedies that make headlines. Although studies suggest that marijuana can cause neurological and cardiovascular damage, that evidence remains inconclusive and largely connected to smoking the drug, which isn't necessary. Marijuana-enriched olive oil can deliver a powerful high.

Yet if marijuana addiction were benign, thousands of Americans wouldn't be seeking to kick the habit each year. In treatment, many express a sense of being unable to move forward in their personal and professional lives while in a constant state of marijuana intoxication. Often, marijuana addiction damages relationships. Its illegality can get a user arrested.

Then there are the symptoms of withdrawal: "irritability, anger, nervousness, sleep difficulty, change in appetite, physical discomfort," says Alan J. Budney, a University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences addiction specialist.

The typical absence of dramatic consequences can make marijuana addiction difficult to break. The memory of brushes with death, jail and destitution can help keep a heroin user or alcoholic from relapsing. But the more-subtle costs of marijuana addiction are easier to forget. Research shows that staying clean is just as hard for marijuana addicts as for heroin addicts, says Robert S. Stephens, chairman of psychology at Virginia Tech University and "Cannabis Dependence" editor.

Initially, meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous provided little help to a Chicago marijuana addict named Bob, who asked that his last name not be used for this article. "I would hear people talk about liver damage, job losses, broken marriages -- stuff that had never happened to me," says Bob, a white-collar worker in his late 20s at that time.

On the surface, his life appeared to be well-managed. He was pursuing a college degree at night and competing in triathlons on weekends. But his sense of accomplishment was utterly undermined by his incessant need to sneak off and smoke joints. He even bought a car expressly for the purpose of having a private place to get high on his lunch hour in downtown Chicago. For an entire decade, he got high about four times a day.

Ultimately, he came to realize he was no less an addict than is the alcoholic or the heroin user. His last toke came in November of 1998. Soon afterward he started a Chicago meeting of Marijuana Anonymous.

After seven clean years, he says, he still has cravings: "I'll catch a whiff of pot on the street, and my mouth starts watering."

Source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (PA)
Author: Kevin Helliker, The Wall Street Journal
Published: Tuesday, May 02, 2006
Copyright: 2006 PG Publishing
Contact: letters@post-gazette.com
Website: http://www.post-gazette.com/

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Comment #49 posted by global_warming on May 03, 2006 at 15:33:03 PT
don't forget
all this taxation can drive a man or women to drink,

and now all this talk of war,

make mine a double,



[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #48 posted by Max Flowers on May 03, 2006 at 15:04:08 PT
rchandar raises a great point
In my view, a very large part of the oppression that cannabis users continue to face is unwittingly maintained by they themselves. That is, if they would just assert their natural right to use it, be unashamed, and not perpetuate a closeted, shamed attitude, things would move a lot faster.

I had the same issue with my dad for the longest time. He would act all morally superior about my "habit" and cast a pall over the subject when it came up, which had been a conditioned reaction for me held over from high school! For the longest time, his immense hypocrisy did not occur to me. Finally I realized that it was due time for me to reject the guilt and turn the tables on him. I began to demonize his alcohol use and ask him how he had any right to criticize my cannabis use when cannabis had never killed or injured anyone, ever, and alcohol is known to kill tens of thousands a year due to cirrhosis and traffic accidents alone.

How about these statistics, I asked him:

- There are over 18 million alcoholics in America

- Cirrhosis of the liver kills over 30,000 each year and rising

- 50 percent of the people on welfare are due to alcohol

- 80 percent of all fire deaths are due to or related to alcohol

- 65 percent of the drownings

- 22 percent of home accidents

- 77 percent of falls

- 36 percent of pedestrian accidents

- 65 percent of all murders

- 40 percent of all assaults

- 35 percent of all rapes

- 30 percent of other sex crimes

- 30 percent of all suicides

- Over 80 percent of all arrests are linked to alcohol

Well, he pretty much shut up about it after that.

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #47 posted by global_warming on May 03, 2006 at 14:50:46 PT
re:comment 36
that link to the wall street journal article was particularly excellent..http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v06/n542/a07.html

What this prohibition and the older prohibition has succeeded in doing is creating a most undesirable situation, where organized criminals are sprouting out of the woodwork, the more interdiction and tax dollars are spent, the larger and more deadly the underworld becomes, sucking down into its black hole good cops, judges, lawyers and politicians, and the sick and dieng are just collateral damage on this stage of existence.

It can only be us who can change, it can only be us who demand change, to end this violent madness that has been born in 'our world.

thanks

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #46 posted by FoM on May 03, 2006 at 12:56:39 PT
BGreen and Whig
Thank you but if you think I'm an angel you better ask Stick about that first! LOL!

[ Post Comment ]
 
Comment #45 posted by BGreen on May 03, 2006 at 12:44:13 PT
Angels are the messengers of God
FoM is angel to many of us (albeit a very feisty angel, LOL) but I know that the lives of Mrs. Green and myself have been forever changed by my participation here at CNews.com, and we will forever be grateful to our wonderful lifetime friends, FoM and Stick, and all of the great posters in this CNews.com family who give us hope for our future.

I just couldn't do without all of you.

The Reverend Bud Green

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #44 posted by whig on May 03, 2006 at 12:30:21 PT
FoM
You are more than a messenger, you are the center of the whole community that has grown here. You are the mother of the movement.

[ Post Comment ]
 
Comment #43 posted by BGreen on May 03, 2006 at 12:06:28 PT
rchandar
Mrs. Green and I are vacationing in the Netherlands this September. Maybe I'll run into you some time?

Stand strong, my brother! It's NOT YOU that has the problem.

Bless you, rchandar.

The Reverend Bud Green

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #42 posted by rchandar on May 03, 2006 at 11:52:55 PT:

on another note...
...my father recently suggested me getting "treated" for "marijuana addiction", and told me that I had to "sacrifice" my trips to Holland as part of being a good husband.

@#$%^??? F#$%^k this pseudo-moral bulls@#$! I'm 35 and a professor! Nooooo wayyyyy... I doubt he's going to drop drinking whiskey for me!!!

--rchandar

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #41 posted by FoM on May 03, 2006 at 08:31:06 PT
dongenero
Thank you. I want to say that without you and all the others who post, read and care are what makes CNews happen. I am only a messenger.

[ Post Comment ]
 
Comment #40 posted by dongenero on May 03, 2006 at 08:27:48 PT
fantastic FoM
Those are impressive numbers FoM.

You are doing great things with cannabisnews.com.



[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #39 posted by FoM on May 03, 2006 at 08:18:24 PT
dongenero
Yesterday we had over 170,000 hits. The site has been downsized but we still had over 3,000,000 total hits for April.

[ Post Comment ]
 
Comment #38 posted by dongenero on May 03, 2006 at 08:04:44 PT
Ah hahah
There are some real gems in these comments.

I sure hope your hit numbers are high FoM. People need to see this site!

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #37 posted by goneposthole on May 03, 2006 at 07:09:48 PT
it gets worse, are you a thinker?
Addicted to Thinking

It started out innocently enough. I began to think at parties now and then to loosen up. Inevitably though, one thought led to another, and soon I was more than just a social thinker.

I began to think alone - "to relax," I told myself - but I knew it wasn't true.

Thinking became more and more important to me, and finally I was thinking all the time. I began to think on the job. I knew that thinking and employment don't mix, but I couldn't stop myself.

I began to avoid friends at lunchtime so I could read Thoreau and Kafka. I would return to the office dizzied and confused, asking, "What is it exactly we are doing here?"

Things weren't going so great at home either. One evening I had turned off the TV and asked my wife about the meaning of life. She spent that night at her mother's.

I soon had a reputation as a heavy thinker. One day the boss called me in. He said, "I like you, and it hurts me to say this, but your thinking has become a real problem. If you don't stop thinking on the job, you'll have to find another job."

This gave me a lot to think about.

I came home early after my conversation with the boss. "Honey," I confessed, "I've been thinking..."

"I know you've been thinking," she said, "and I want a divorce!"

"But Honey, surely it's not that serious."

"It is serious," she said, lower lip aquiver.

"You think as much as college professors, and college professors don't make any money, so if you keep on thinking we won't have any money!"

"That's a faulty syllogism," I said impatiently, and she began to cry. I'd had enough. "I'm going to the library," I snarled as I stomped out the door. I headed for the library, in the mood for some Nietzsche. I roared into the parking lot and ran up to the big glass doors... they didn't open. The library was closed. As I sank to the ground clawing at the unfeeling glass, whimpering for Zarathustra, a poster caught my eye. "Friend, is heavy thinking ruining your life?" it asked. You probably recognize that line. It comes from the standard Thinkers Anonymous poster.

Which is why I am what I am today: a recovering thinker. I never miss a TA meeting.

At each meeting we watch a non-educational video; last week it was "Porky's."

Then we share experiences about how we avoided thinking since the last meeting. I still have my job, and things are a lot better at home. Life just seemed... easier, somehow, as soon as I stopped thinking.

http://www.cybersalt.org/cleanlaugh/archive/80.htm

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #36 posted by Celaya on May 03, 2006 at 01:18:14 PT
The Devil's In The Details
The Wall Street Journal is a puzzling organization. Just Friday, they said:

http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v06/n542/a07.html [...]

*** Prohibition and the war on drugs are fueling a criminal underworld that handily crushes nascent democratic institutions in countries that we keep expecting to develop. Is it reasonable to blame Mexico for what enormously well-funded organized-crime operations are doing to its political, judicial and law enforcement bodies when we know that Al Capone's power during alcohol prohibition accomplished much the same in the U.S.? These are realities of the market, of supply and demand and prices under prohibition that no amount of wishing or moralizing can change...

Now, four days later, comes this screed by Kevin Helliker sounding like a John Walters screenplay.

*** People are aware of the addictive potential of alcohol, cocaine, heroin, even gambling. But the perception persists that marijuana isn't addictive.

Perception?

*** The doggedness of this myth

Myth? No the myths are here: http://www.marijuana.com/myths.php3

*** may be attributable to the campaign to legalize the drug,

No. It's attributable to the facts. There, logically, is a tiny proportion of marijuana consumers that develop a psychological compulsion with it (as some folks do with ice cream, bingo, etc.), but even in those cases, it is generally not problematic.

*** as well as the comparatively subtle costs of marijuana addiction.

When they can't find any significant harms, they go for the "subtle" ones.

*** But there is virtually no debate among American researchers, who have been documenting and studying marijuana addiction for more than two decades.

I guess not. When you study something that doesn't exist, it's pretty easy to agree with your fellow mercenary "researchers."

*** Now, Cambridge University Press has combined the results of their federally funded studies

If that's not a giveaway, well....

*** most already published in peer-reviewed journals

Peers in lap dog science.

*** in a new book called "Cannabis Dependence."

In the great tradition of fantasy.

*** The book offers substantial scientific evidence of what Marijuana Anonymous members know firsthand -- that the euphoria induced by THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, can be addictive.

As addictive as chocolate almond ice cream.

*** A study issued last month by the University of Maryland's Center for Substance Abuse Research examined the drug of choice for Americans seeking treatment for addiction during the decade that ended in 2003.

Couldn't be "counseling" about a "compulsion," could it?

*** It found that the percentage of addicts who cited marijuana as their primary problem more than doubled to 16% from 7%, while alcohol fell to 41% from 57%.

And, of course, "addicts citing marijuana" are primarily those mandated to "treatment" by "authorities." Their real problem was getting caught in the witch hunt.

*** The number of Americans age 12 and older using marijuana at least once a month jumped to 14.6 million in 2004 from 10.1 million in 1996,

Great. Just gratuitously mix children in with adults for some nice hysterical flavor.

*** according to the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration,

Well if SAMSHA says it, it must be true. 8^)

*** which adds that some of that jump may be attributable to a change in surveying methods.

ie, the "increase" just became much less significant.

*** The addictiveness of marijuana is underappreciated in part because legalization advocates tend to play down the problem.

LOL. You mean point out the myth.

*** Although studies suggest that marijuana can cause neurological and cardiovascular damage,

Just like studies suggest marijuana causes cancer.

*** that evidence remains inconclusive and largely connected to smoking the drug, which isn't necessary. Marijuana-enriched olive oil can deliver a powerful high.

That's an unusual admission for a prohibitionist. Their whole "harms" argument is really about the irritation of smoke.

*** In treatment, many express a sense of being unable to move forward in their personal and professional lives while in a constant state of marijuana intoxication.

That magic word "many." Many could be a million, a thousand, or seven or eight.

*** Often, marijuana addiction damages relationships.

"Often" Another conveniently nebulous, but loaded term. Yep. Compulsion can take place with lots of activities (like golf) and hence cause imbalance in life.

*** Its illegality can get a user arrested.

Now there's a great negative consequence --- of prohibition.

*** The typical absence of dramatic consequences can make marijuana addiction difficult to break.

ie - no problem, then why stop? Better than eating too much ice cream.

*** Research shows that staying clean is just as hard for marijuana addicts as for heroin addicts

Give me a break! No end to the bald-faced lies. This then, is the main purpose of the feds funding research to back their lumping strategy. Marijuana equals heroin. Consumers are "unclean!"

And up is down.

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #35 posted by b4daylight on May 03, 2006 at 00:35:20 PT:

addicted
Bush thinks we are addicted to oil.

I guess your motor-vehicle is America's new drug?

I would like to ask my self. If I could be addicted to one thing in life. Remember addiction starts with use. Abuse is use.

How about THC? Prescription drugs? Do you want to be addicted to caffine? gambling my life away? How about alcohol? Maybe nicotine? How about all the hard drugs? gotta love gasoline? etc?

I got my one thing I am addicted too everytime I visit BC, NL, and now Mexico. I say dam Hypocrites abound in the witch hunt. And yes I am only addicted err use; I mean abuse one of those listed above.

Email me if your carless or have some thoughts on that<<

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #34 posted by FoM on May 02, 2006 at 18:33:58 PT
Toker00
It's at 7:30 pm. I think the gates open earlier. We have time to figure it out. It will be so much fun.

[ Post Comment ]
 
Comment #33 posted by Toker00 on May 02, 2006 at 18:24:06 PT
FoM
That's great! I don't see any reason why I can't come, at least at this time. Lawn tickets sound great with me. Plenty of time to anticipate. Is it at night, or day?

Toke.

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #32 posted by mayan on May 02, 2006 at 18:21:00 PT
Fed Funded "Studies"
Now, Cambridge University Press has combined the results of their federally funded studies -- most already published in peer-reviewed journals -- in a new book called "Cannabis Dependence."

Federally funded studies? BUWAHAHAA!!! What a friggin' joke!

THE WAY OUT...

May 3rd - The theatre program at Clark University presents: WHAT REALLY HAPPENED ON 9/11?: http://www.waronfreedom.org/press/worcester.html

My fellow Citizens for 9/11 Truth: http://www.911blogger.com/2006/05/my-fellow-citizens-for-911-truth.html

Hare Krishna Devotee in the Middle East Sees Through 9/11: A Distant View of 9/11: http://www.jswami.info/9-11

Big screen too small for 9/11 story: http://www.pressconnects.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060501/COLUMNISTS04/605010314/1005/

9/11 was staged (LTE): http://www.aspendailynews.com/article_13957

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #31 posted by ekim on May 02, 2006 at 18:15:22 PT
thinking about Jose
May 3 06 Democracy for America 07:00 PM Eleanor Schockett Miami-Dade Florida USA Members of the Democracy for America grass roots organization welcome Board Member Eleanor Schockett to their meeting for a presentation followed by some Q & A in regards to the absolute failure of drug prohibition.

May 5 06 Arlington Sunrise Rotary 06:45 AM Rusty White Arlington Texas USA Speaker Rusty White is a welcomed guest for breakfast and discussion of the failure of drug prohibition with members of the Arlington Sunrise Rotary.

May 6 06 Cures Not Wars Rally 04:00 PM Jeff Kaufman New York New York USA Speaker Jeff Kaufman will speak at this year's "Cures Not Wars Rally". Location: Battery Park. Visit the following for a map to the rally: http://www.cures-not-wars.org/nymap2006.pdf

May 8 06 A Debate Re: "Have Our Drug Laws Failed?" 04:00 PM Jim Gray San Diego California USA Speaker Judge James P. Gray will particpate in a debate with student drug testing advocate Roger Morgan. The topic of the debate is "Have Our Drug Laws Failed?" Location: San Diego State University, downstairs in the Aztec Center

[ Post Comment ]
 
Comment #30 posted by global_warming on May 02, 2006 at 17:05:46 PT
it is ending
in Colorado

in Mexico

In every place on this planet Earth,



[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #29 posted by global_warming on May 02, 2006 at 17:03:19 PT
are coming
to end this war



[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #28 posted by global_warming on May 02, 2006 at 16:47:45 PT
sorry
freewill,

you got caught,

in this dialogue,

in the meantime,

this American Zero tolerance mentality,

is hard assed butting against her people,

those same people,

who pay their dutiful tax,

to support this 'world,



[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #27 posted by global_warming on May 02, 2006 at 16:32:23 PT
that time
when 'we can dance

naked before God



[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #26 posted by freewillks on May 02, 2006 at 16:31:03 PT
Air
Hi my name is Freewill

I've been an addict for 30+ years, partaking whenever the chance comes my way. I want to stop sometimes, but am not able to. Something keeps drawing be back. I know i have hurt people in my life becouse of it. All becouse they think that it alters my perception of life. To be honest, I know it has. It has made me think about life and death.

Yes folks, I am Adicted to the love of Jesus Christ. May God have mercy on my soul!

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #25 posted by global_warming on May 02, 2006 at 16:21:45 PT
the time
is coming,

for you and me,



[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #24 posted by larryh on May 02, 2006 at 16:14:38 PT:

Here's my take on this.
USA -- People are aware of the addictive potential of alcohol, cocaine, heroin, even gambling. But the perception persists that M & Mís arenít addictive. The doggedness of this myth may be attributable to the campaign to market and sell them by the truck loads, as well as the comparatively subtle costs of obesity from this addiction. But there is virtually no debate among American researchers, who have been documenting and studying M & M addiction for more than two decades.

Now, Cambridge University Press has combined the results of their federally funded studies -- most already published in peer-reviewed journals -- in a new book called "M & M Dependence." The book offers substantial scientific evidence of what Chocolate Anonymous members know firsthand -- that the euphoria induced by chocolate, the active ingredient in M & Mís, can be addictive. Studies show that between 2 percent and 3 percent of U.S. chocolate users become addicted within two years of first trying it,. which is scientifically known as cocoa.. About 10 percent of those who try it become addicted at some point. Now, addiction-treatment statistics are showing dramatic growth in M & M related problems. A study issued last month by the University of Maryland's Center for Chocolate Abuse Research examined the candy of choice for Americans seeking treatment for addiction during the decade that ended in 2003. It found that the percentage of addicts who cited M & Mís as their primary problem more than doubled to 16 percent from 7 percent, while healthy food such as fruit and vegetables fell to 41 percent from 57 percent. Among chocolate, only Almond Joy ranked higher than M & Mís as a problem for treatment seekers. M & Mís rise in the ranks of problem snacks may reflect a big spike in usage. The number of Americans age 12 and older eating M & Mís at least once a month jumped to 14.6 million in 2004 from 10.1 million in 1996, according to the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, which adds that some of that jump may be attributable to a change in surveying methods. To study chocolate addiction, the contributors to "Chocolate Dependence" -- a group of researchers at universities across the U.S. -- published newspaper advertisements offering treatment to people unable to quit eating chocolate. Invariably, hundreds stepped forward. The typical volunteer was a white-collar man in his thirties who bought M & Mís daily and didn't much care for fruit and vegetables or other health foods. "Their substance of choice is chocolate, preferable M & Mís " says Roger A. Roffman, an editor of "Chocolate Dependence" and a University of Washington professor of social work. The researchers found that the overall rate of addiction among chocolate users is slightly lower than for imbibers of tobacco. But among people who ate M & Mís daily, the rate of addiction is significantly higher than among daily smokers. Addiction is diagnosed when a person experiences at least three of seven indicators, such as failure to control usage, preoccupation with the snack machines and withdrawal symptoms. The addictiveness of M & Mís is under appreciated in part because big business advocates tend to play down the problem. But a bigger factor may be that M & M addiction typically doesn't kill, wreck careers, or otherwise wreak the sort of tragedies that make headlines. Although studies suggest that M & Mís can cause neurological and cardiovascular damage, that evidence remains inconclusive and largely connected to eating bag after bag, which isn't necessary, because they sell the 1 pound bags at your local Wal-Mart. Yet if chocolate addiction were benign, thousands of Americans wouldn't be seeking to kick the habit each year. In treatment, many express a sense of being unable to move forward in their personal and professional lives while in a constant state of M & M craving. Often, M & M addiction damages relationships, because the person gets really fat and wonĎt share their M & MĎs with their partner. Then there are the symptoms of withdrawal: "irritability, anger, nervousness, sleep difficulty, change in appetite, physical discomfort," says Alan J. Babyruth, a University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences addiction specialist. The typical absence of dramatic consequences can make M & M addiction difficult to break. The memory of the commercials on late night television, the King size yellow and black bags in the convenience store. But the more-subtle costs of M & M addiction are easier to forget. Research shows that staying clean is just as hard for M & M addicts as for heroin addicts, says Robert S. Snickers, chairman of psychology at Virginia Tech University and "Chocolate Dependence" editor. Initially, meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous provided little help to a Chicago M & M addict named Bob, who asked that his last name not be used for this article. "I would hear people talk about getting fatter and fatter, job losses, broken marriages -- stuff that had never happened to me," says Bob, a white-collar worker in his late 20s at that time. On the surface, his life appeared to be well-managed. He was pursuing a college degree at night and competing in triathlons on weekends. But his sense of accomplishment was utterly undermined by his incessant need to sneak off and consume bags of M & Mís He even bought a car expressly for the purpose of running to the corner store on his lunch hour in downtown Chicago. For an entire decade, he ate king size bags of M & Ms about four times a day. Ultimately, he came to realize he was no less an addict than is the alcoholic or the heroin user. His last bag of M&Mís came in November of 1998. Soon afterward he started a Chicago meeting of M & Mís Anonymous. After seven clean years, he says, he still has cravings: "I'll catch a glimpse of the bags in the stores, and my mouth starts watering." Source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (PA) Author: Kevin Heathbar, The Twix Street Journal Published: Tuesday, May 02, 2006 Copyright: 2006 Hershey PA, Publishing



[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #23 posted by rchandar on May 02, 2006 at 16:13:30 PT:

you will seek treatment...
...if what you're smoking is illegal. that makes sense to a person of any class, race, occupation. I stand by the government's stated, published claim years ago: marijuana isn't addictive. something in these people's "criteria" is way, way messed up. An alcohol addict cannot function without daily intake of alcohol. A heroin or tobacco addict needs it every day, no matter what. I sincerely doubt there are any true marijuana "addicts", I just can't conceive of a world where people, given the substance is illegal, can get their hands on pot every day, 365 days a year, indefinitely...

...the symptoms. Paranoid symptoms are normal for someone afraid of arrest. There's no kinesiology going on here, it's the simple fact that what you're doing is against the law and you know it.

...unable to succeed in personal/professional goals. well, surest way to stunt someone's career is to let loose the gossip that X is a marijuana smoker! Kinda makes signing that "Drug-Free Workplace" document for every job difficult, doesn't it?? No, the simple fact is that pot is demonized, demonized to the point at which your peer or co-worker will simply conclude that you're not capable of performing normal work, just because. Messes up relationships? Most of that is due to this convenient assigning of blame, that someone broke the law and someone else couldn't accept it.

An end to marijuana addiction? Legalize it.

--rchandar

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #22 posted by global_warming on May 02, 2006 at 16:06:37 PT
only stepping back
"Another example of the drug war rotting scholars' minds."

The time is coming

When 'we can look each other in the face,



[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #21 posted by charmed quark on May 02, 2006 at 15:44:21 PT
Use has increased nearly 50%?????
Note the statment "The number of Americans age 12 and older using marijuana at least once a month jumped to 14.6 million in 2004 from 10.1 million in 1996, according to the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration".

That's nearly 50%. Meanwhile, the DEA is saying their harsh interdiction and inccarceration approach has REDUCED cannabis use in this period.

Obviously, these groups are making up numbers to suit their purposes. The addiction industry wants to show the numbers are increasing, implying we aren't "treating" enough "addicts", while the criminal industry wants the numbers are reducing to show their methods are working.

I love the way they through around the word "addiction". I should put up a link to the American Psychiatric Socity's multi-dimensional definition of drug dependency.

Another example of the drug war rotting scholars' minds.

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #20 posted by Universer on May 02, 2006 at 15:18:54 PT:

Dr. Stephens at VT
I'm embarrassed that this individual is affiliated with my beloved alma mater in Blacksburg.

Please, let's encourage this doctor of psychology to explain himself more thoroughly.

http://search.vt.edu/peopledetail.jsp?person=809792

Why, o why, is there no distinction drawn between physical and psychological addiction? Aren't those related to two entirely separate brain functions?

I'm addicted to baseball. I love the game. I watch it on TV, listen to it on the radio, attend games of all levels in person, sometimes paying as much as $20 to do so. During the winter months, I crave it. I suppose I should join BA.

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #19 posted by FoM on May 02, 2006 at 15:14:55 PT
dongenero
That's good!

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Comment #18 posted by global_warming on May 02, 2006 at 15:11:33 PT
in the meantime I read
Agents Seize Million Dollars of Marijuana,

Suspected marijuana grower being sought by authorities,

Police, Feds Tipped To 167-Pound Box Of Weed,

and some good news,

Italian Premier Quits After Defying Vote,

finally this money grabbing bastard has been kicked out,

"Mr. Berlusconi, 69, who had overseen the longest-surviving government here since World War II, had refused for weeks to concede defeat, questioning the results in the tight national elections last month."

He can question it to his horrible grave,

There is more than his money,

There is more than his shiny power,

There is that Final Place,

Where he can listen to his own tarnished arguments,

Forever and Ever,

I hope that this latest cut,

I Love the French,

And the Geulliteen,

It was swift, decisive and most accurate,

Maybe that line in the sand,

Has been scratched here on planet Earth,

It is coming,

That time when mercy will become the new buzzword,

While main stream media

Compile their bottom lines,

They can watch the line,

That is coming' before their face,



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Comment #17 posted by dongenero on May 02, 2006 at 15:09:04 PT
my name is don genero.......
.......and I'm a chocoholic.

It started when my wife began using in the evening.

I didn't think it was any big deal. "What's a little chocolate? It has antioxidents, bioflavinoids...it's really health food!"

Well, before you know it, my tolerance is such that I can polish off a whole box of Fannie May Meltaways.

Then I start going for the hard stuff like Godiva, Lake Champlain, Swiss chocolate, which is much stronger than the Milky Way and Hershey Bars your parents ate.

Finally, I'm on 70% -80% cacao bars. After meals. I'm always searching for that feeling again....that elusive chocolate high.

Ho hum, you get the idea....chocolate, french fries, sugar candy, talking on the cell phone, picking your nose.

I'm not going to dispute that somebody will be unable to stop themselves from wanting cannabis but, let's not blow it out of proportion. I reject the comparisons to alcohol, tobacco, heroin and cocaine. We are talking about whole other levels of addiction.

Just because scmeff cannot control his popcorn intake does not mean I should never be allowed to eat popcorn.



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Comment #16 posted by PainWithNoInsurance on May 02, 2006 at 15:04:34 PT
Prison Addiction
Many politicians are addicted to the idea that prisons are the answer for everything. I don't agree that cannabis is addictive, but I do agree that many things are addictive that we consume or do. One of which is the drug caffeine. If the government wasn't full of caffeine addicted legislators, we would have alot of people in prison for soda pop, coffee and chocolate. Prison isn't the answer for people in need.

Congratulations to Mexico for trying something sensible for their drug problems. Prison has not solved the drug problem anywhere on the planet.

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Comment #15 posted by global_warming on May 02, 2006 at 14:45:24 PT
yeah right
"Studies show that between 2 percent and 3 percent of U.S. marijuana users become addicted within two years of first trying the drug, which is scientifically known as cannabis. About 10 percent of those who try it become addicted at some point."

So lets efing lock them all up, even the 90% who are not addicted, even the peaceful (peace lovers) and open minded, even the sick and the dieing, lets lock them all up.



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Comment #14 posted by FoM on May 02, 2006 at 14:41:23 PT
Whig
I didn't know that. We got in between price tickets to see Greendale the first time and we couldn't see well at all. The people on the lawn in Columbus had a screen to watch and they just looked a lot happier. The sound was great no matter where a person was. I don't need to see Neil and CSN close up I just want to hear his music and message. The over all spirit that flows thru the concert is what makes it happen for me.

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Comment #13 posted by whig on May 02, 2006 at 14:35:10 PT
FoM
It's not too uncommon to smell something a little funny on the field at the Post-Gazette Pavillion (Star Lake Amphitheatre).

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Comment #12 posted by FoM on May 02, 2006 at 14:29:06 PT
Off Topic: Toker00
I got the tickets for Septemeber 10th. I only got lawn tickets. When you sit anywhere in the seats you can't even smoke a cigarette but you sure can drink beer. The lawn looks a little more relaxed. If you can't make it that's ok.

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Comment #11 posted by Toker00 on May 02, 2006 at 14:28:58 PT
schmeff
"And it's much stronger than yesterday's popcorn."

Perfect. Now that's funny!

Toke.

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Comment #10 posted by Toker00 on May 02, 2006 at 14:26:23 PT
Cannabis is not addictive...
...but it sure is FUN!! People like to have FUN. Maybe we're just addicted to FUN. Some people eat hot peppers that blisters their mouths, face, and makes 'em sweat, for FUN. Some people like falling out of perfectly good airplanes for FUN. I could go on, but what's the point? Just prohibit FUN, and ALL addictions will cease. WRONG. A Black Market For FUN will be created. Damn. Right back where we started.

Wage peace on war. END CANNABIS PROHIBITION NOW!

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Comment #9 posted by schmeff on May 02, 2006 at 14:13:55 PT
Confessions of an Addict
"I'll catch a whiff of popcorn on the street, and my mouth starts watering."

It's true. I won't be thinking about it, I won't be craving it, it could be the farthest thing from my mind. Then I'll smell it, and I gotta have it. You may deny that it's addicting, but you'd be wrong.

And it's much stronger than yesterday's popcorn.

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Comment #8 posted by lombar on May 02, 2006 at 14:04:26 PT
as a former tobacco smoker
I have to say that the 'craving' for cannabis is not at ALL like that of tobacco. One time I went to an NA meeting and found that they just don't count ciggarettes. They all talk about how they have been 'clean' for a year... over a SMOKE! So what is addiction? It is when NOTHING ELSE MATTERS. When your life revolves around something to the point that you neglect everything else...



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Comment #7 posted by FoM on May 02, 2006 at 13:44:37 PT
BGreen
Thanks. I am baffled by it all. If a natural substance like cannabis or coffee is enjoyable a person will want to use it again. If they didn't make a person feel better no one would partake. That's not addiction.

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Comment #6 posted by JR Bob Dobbs on May 02, 2006 at 13:42:14 PT
A few words from the Doc seem appropriate here
"I am not an addict, but I refuse to be without it." - Dr. Hunter S. Thompson, quoted in High Times magazine

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Comment #5 posted by BGreen on May 02, 2006 at 13:40:49 PT
Warning: Nonsense can be addictive
No, FoM, I've never met anybody with a cannabis "problem" (except from the legal aspects,) and I've never known anybody who sought treatment at all for cannabis.

I've had several friend who died from booze, though.

The Reverend Bud Green

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Comment #4 posted by FoM on May 02, 2006 at 13:38:20 PT
whig
Sometimes I wonder what makes news people tick. Neil did Let's Roll. It was for Todd Beamer and all those who died on that terrible flight. It was mostly a tribute song. No one after 9/11 felt that we didn't need to get Bin Laden for what he did once we knew it was him which we learned fast. Iraq and 9/11 are not related. I wonder if they can put two and two together sometimes.

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Comment #3 posted by whig on May 02, 2006 at 13:25:25 PT
OT: Fox calls Neil Young "forgetful" of 9/11
http://mediamatters.org/items/200605020006

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Comment #2 posted by whig on May 02, 2006 at 13:24:37 PT
Bias much?
Research shows that staying clean is just as hard for marijuana addicts as for heroin addicts, says Robert S. Stephens, chairman of psychology at Virginia Tech University and "Cannabis Dependence" editor.

If they can report this with a straight face, what can I even say?

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Comment #1 posted by FoM on May 02, 2006 at 13:19:45 PT
Marijuana Addiction
Does anyone know anyone that ever had to go for treatment for marijuana dependency other then being forced by the courts or by parents of minor children? I have never heard of one adult person seeking help.

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